35 Steps

According to many spiritual teachers, all human beings are, in reality, spiritual beings on a human journey. We reincarnate as human beings in order to evolve as souls.

Our ultimate aim is to become fully conscious and capable as unique individual expressions of All That Is.

It is a long journey, but that’s okay because the soul is eternal.

Soul Evolution

The soul’s journey is really a process of evolving. This means growing in consciousness, steadily progressing through different levels or stages of consciousness.

A d v e r t i s e m e n t


How do we grow in consciousness? Through taking on challenging experiences in physical form. These cause us to make important, “soul-searching” choices and call upon us to discover our inner resources.

But why in physical form? Why would a perfectly happy spiritual being decide to inhabit the physical realm with all of its limitations and difficulties?

It is precisely so that we can experience the state of what feels like total separation from others and from the rest of reality. Only by going into this physically separated human form can we know ourselves as beings in our own right, and not just as … well … undifferentiated blobs of energy. Being physical throws our experiences and choices into extremely sharp relief in a way that is not possible otherwise. This is how we learn who we are and how to become all that we are.

In other words:

Choice and the ramifications of choice provide the essential lessons of life. In a very real sense, you choose to be here in order to make choices.

Messages from Michael

The 35 Steps

We are here to know ourselves and be all we can be, step by step. And according to the teachings of the entity known as Michael, there are 35 steps to the reincarnational process. The body and personality you have now are merely the vehicles you have chosen for this latest step in your journey.

But why 35 steps?

Why not 36 steps? Or 10? Or 100?

It is simply because, according to Michael, we go through five major stages of evolution through reincarnation. And, within each stage there are seven increments or levels to be completed. (Yes, it is rather like a computer game.)

5 x 7 = 35.

35 steps

Each single step requires a whole lifetime to complete. In fact, each step usually requires more than one lifetime. Typically, the entire journey of 35 steps takes well over a hundred lifetimes.

So let’s look at the journey in more detail. We’ll start with the five major stages of soul evolution through reincarnation.

The Five Stages

The Michael teachings describe a sequence of five “cycles” or stages of soul evolution. They are named after the stages of human development:

Each of these five corresponds to a specific level of development in capability and self-awareness within the individual soul.

Each stage is also characterised by a different learning focus that is more subtle than the previous ones.

Michael Newton

Incidentally, the same pattern of soul evolution has been identified by the hypnotherapist Michael Newton (right). His groundbreaking research was published in the best-selling book Journey of Souls: Case Studies of Life Between Lives (Llewellyn, 1994).

The books by Newton and his students draw upon thousands of transcripts of people who, under hypnotic regression, have re-experienced being between lives. From the higher perspective of their soul they are able to explain what happens after death and before birth. This includes information about the levels of consciousness through which reincarnating souls evolve.

What Newton and others have discovered is that souls between lives exist in light-form, and that each soul emanates a particular colour of the spectrum which indicates its current level of consciousness.

The spectrum begins at white (all colours) but then goes through red, yellow, green, blue, to deep purple and violet. From low frequency to high frequency. The least evolved souls — the “newbies” — have a pinkish hue. The oldest souls — those nearing the end of the whole reincarnational cycle — have a blueish hue.

Although the spectrum is a continuum, Dr. Newton has found that it can be divided into five distinct stages or levels of evolvement, from Level I to Level V. These can be mapped onto the five stages given in the Michael teachings, from Infant soul to Old soul.

So, for example, souls in the middle (or third) stage of reincarnation are referred to as “Young souls” in the Michael teachings and they are at what Newton would call “Level III”. They will have a yellowish or golden hue.

(As an aside, both Newton and the Michael entity also identify higher levels of soul evolution which do not involve reincarnation.)

The stages of reincarnation (or soul age) can also be likened to the stages of metamorphosis we see in nature, such as egg, caterpillar, chrysalis, butterfly. In reincarnation, though, what changes is not the physical form but the mode of consciousness, especially the form of self-awareness and — as a result — the way of relating to others.

A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Soul age and personality

Soul age will affect how a personality comes across in certain ways.

    1. Infant souls focus on immediate survival needs. They flourish in simple environments close to nature, such as remote tribes or rural, pastoral settings. In the context of modern society, however, they can come across as uncivilised simpletons or yokels, and may even be deemed to be psychopathic or have some sort of developmental disorder. Psychologically, they are naive, impulsive and “pre-conventional”, acting on impulse or habit with little or no thought for consequences. Because they lack both social understanding and self-inhibition, they are capable of committing antisocial or immoral acts without any sense of wrongdoing. As such, they do not fit well within modern society and may end up in prison or in psychiatric units. While infant souls may lack the moral principles, social graces and cultural understanding of older souls, they are in a sense completely innocent, being without pretense or agenda. [Well-known example: Fred West, serial killer]

  • Baby souls, in contrast to Infant souls, think a great deal about their actions. Their lives are about safety, security, structure and order — rigidly so. Both their beliefs and their actions are largely rule-bound, so they are often ultra-conservative, traditionalist, orthodox, upright, moralistic, religiously devout, and mindful of law and order. That said, they will occasionally give in to temptation, or temper tantrum, and break the rules themselves — but then might find themselves tortured with guilt and shame. They come across to older souls as rather “square” – conscientious, conventional, conformist. Baby soul communities tend to be highly principled and civilised (think of the Amish). They are acutely aware of the rights and wrongs of people’s actions, including their own, though they have little insight into the motives behind them. Bad behaviour is sinful, and that’s that. [Well-known example: Jimmy Swaggart]


  • Young souls tend to be extravert, outward-bound, worldly, frenetically energetic, brash, competitive, political, ambitious and individualistic. They are more ego-driven than personalities at any other soul age, keen to prove themselves in the world at large. They like to think for themselves, assert their own opinions, and follow their own agenda, with a certainty that their own way is by far the best way. They are generally attracted to some form of worldly success — fame, fortune, power, glory. In fact, they are more fearful of death than souls at other stages, and those who aren’t sure about life after death may be anxious to make a big impact on the world stage – to create some kind of symbolic immortality for themselves. Young souls are acutely aware of their own goals and intentions but do not really question them. [Well-known example: Napoléon Bonaparte.]


  • Mature souls tend to be thoughtful, reflective and sincere within themselves, and sensitive and empathetic towards others. Psychologically, their awareness is no longer egocentric (in the sense of being limited to a single perspective), but capable of accommodating multiple perspectives. In fact, the self-serving ego comes to be seen as a problem, something to be overcome — though in reality it is more a case of incorporating it into a broader level of awareness. This tension between ego and ego-transcendence, or between having both a personal agenda and a desire to be more open and authentic, makes life much more complicated — sometimes overwhelmingly so. On the one hand, mature souls reject narrow-minded values. Yet on the other hand, they can empathise with whoever holds those same values. Fixed opinions are replaced by a sense of ever-shifting perspectives — “It all depends on how you look at it”. This disappearance of solid ground kicks off a search for deeper meaning and self-understanding — whether through art, psychology, philosophy or spirituality. Politically, mature souls tend to be liberal and inclusive, and disapprove of any kind of narrow chauvinism. To younger souls, they can come across as bleeding-heart liberals. They tend to question everything, including their own motives, and are prone to do a lot of soul-searching (literally). [Well known example: Barack Obama.]


  • OId souls tend to exude some degree of depth, gravitas or wisdom that is quite unmistakable. Having moved beyond the conflicts of the mature soul, they are also lighter and have a sense of joyous freedom — the freedom to enjoy being very much in the world, but not of it. They are relatively calm, measured, untroubled and stable, unattached to social structures and cultural expectations, being sure of their own existence and inner strengths and their compassion for others. Their focus is on true self-expression and fulfillment, consciously participating in the evolution of all-that-is. As such, they tend to go their own unique way in life, letting go and letting be, in a detached way that may seem very weird and eccentric to younger souls. Late-stage old souls often focus on teaching spiritual wisdom with great compassion. [Well-known example: Osho]


Note: These descriptions emphasise the differences between stages. In reality, though, there is a gradual blend from one stage to the next. A person at the start of the Mature stage, for example, will act mostly like a Young soul but with elements of Mature soul nature beginning to emerge.

The lessons of each stage

Here are the five stages of soul evolution through human reincarnation, together with the typical learning experiences associated with each stage:

soul age focus 2 450

So we begin reincarnating as Infant souls, complete novices at physical existence. At this first stage we are largely in a state of incompetence and terror, frankly. But through experiences and choices we learn and grow. We steadily progress from being Infant souls to Baby souls to Young souls to Mature souls. Finally, we enter the fifth stage as accomplished Old souls, the experts of human existence.

As infant souls we learned about choices having to do with survival, as baby souls choices having to do with moral codes and ethics, as young souls choices having to do with mastery of achievement, as mature souls choices having to do with relationships, and as old souls choices having to do with the nature of oneness with the Tao. An infant soul would therefore not understand the choices of an old soul although an older soul would likely have more understanding of the nature of younger soul choice having had them.

Michael, via Victoria Marina

To look at each stage in more detail see:

Stage 1. The Infant Soul

Stage 2. The Baby Soul

Stage 3. The Young Soul

Stage 4. The Mature Soul

Stage 5. The Old Soul

Soul levels in the human population

The six or seven billion people on the planet span the whole range of stages, but the average is said to be somewhere just past the mid-point of stage 3 (see chart below). In other words, this world is currently dominated by Young souls whose primary focus is competitive self-advancement.

The seven steps within each stage

Within each stage there are seven discrete steps to go through. In the Michael teachings, they are called “levels”, so in each stage we proceed from 1st level to 7th level. Calling these “levels” can be a bit confusing (since Newton refers to the five major stages as “levels”), so I sometimes prefer to call them “steps”.

So each stage of reincarnation has seven distinct learning steps. For example, we begin the whole journey at step 1 as Infant souls, learn that lesson, then undertake step 2 as Infant souls, and so on. On completing the 7th step of the Infant stage, we then begin the 1st step of the Baby stage.

35 steps

The early steps in any stage are about experiencing life at this new stage of evolution, learning the essential lessons through appropriate experiences.

The later steps are about expressing those lessons, demonstrating this level of consciousness in action.

For example, in the Young soul stage, the first three steps — from 1st level Young soul to 3rd level Young soul — are about discovering the meaning of free will and self-determination; the last three steps — 5th level Young soul to 7th level Young soul — are about demonstrating the meaning of free will and self-determination in action. (The middle step — 4th level Young soul — is about consolidating the lessons learned.)

The first step or level of any stage is like putting a toe in the water; the final step is like teaching others how to swim:

1st Level Initiation into the new stage. “Toe in the water.” First glimpses of the new consciousness. We come to recognise that there is a whole new way of being ahead of us, and we respond to the call, even though as yet it is beyond our comprehension.
2nd Level Building foundations. Wading in and out. Comparing and contrasting the old and new consciousness. We come to understand what is essential and different about this higher level, though it still remains ‘ahead’ of us, not quite within us.
3rd Level Rising to the challenge. Taking the plunge. We determinedly commit ourselves to actively embrace and explore the new consciousness.
4th Level Integration. Relaxing into it, “enjoying the water.” We now identify ourselves with this way of understanding self, life and others – this is our truth. We fully incorporate and consolidate the new consciousness into our own being.
5th Level Expression. Splashing about – “Look at me!” We openly share and communicate our new, true sense of self and of life’s meaning. We feel drawn to broadcast our truth, to “go public” with it.
6th Level Demonstration. Giving value and benefit to others. “Being a life guard.” Our new consciousness is put to the test. We also burn off any outstanding karma incurred in the earlier steps of this stage.
7th Level Mastery. Peak performance. We have complete understanding and control of our awareness at this level. We know exactly what we are doing. We may feel like a role model. Hmm… What’s next?

This sequence of seven steps is repeated through each stage, making 35 steps in all from the beginning of reincarnation to the end.

In case you’re wondering, I’m at the 5th level of the Mature soul stage. My current life’s lesson is about outwardly expressing my Mature soul consciousness.

A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Many lives

So, we start our evolutionary journey at level 1 of stage I (as “1st Level Infant souls”) and end it at level 7 of stage 5 (as “7th Level Old souls”).

There are 35 steps in all. And each single step requires at least one lifetime to complete.

A single step can be done in one lifetime but often that’s too big a stretch, so an initial life may undertaken as a taster, followed by one or two more which really go for it.

Sometimes a life is interrupted, and the soul will just have to start over in the next life. Also, some lives are undertaken for reasons other than the specific intent to develop. For example, one lifetime might be undertaken primarily to assist another soul in their development. And some lives are taken on primarily for the death experience, for karmic reasons. These can be very short, of the order of days, weeks or months.

Taking into account all the gaps spent in the non-physical state between lives, a single step is typically accomplished in about 100-300 years of Earth time.

The whole journey of 35 steps usually takes well over 100 lifetimes. Hence, the whole journey is likely to take of the order of 7,000-8,000 years, but possibly a lot more if the population is low and opportunities to incarnate are few.

Questions and Answers

Coming back again and again sounds dreadful. Why don’t we just give up and be done with it? Can’t I just decide that this is my last time?

You cannot skip any of the steps, nor would you want to (from the soul’s perspective). You wouldn’t rent a movie but then skip to the final credits just to avoid the whole process of sitting through the movie. In fact, it’s more like a computer game. You are playing the game because you want to, and at some level you actually love it. And you know perfectly that you need to master one level before you can move on to the next level. That’s what the game is all about.

Who says?

There’s no tyrannical deity controlling the game, forcing you to keep at it, deciding who gets to “graduate” and who doesn’t. It’s just the natural dynamic of life and the evolution of consciousness. A tadpole cannot suddenly transform into a full-grown frog. A baby human cannot suddenly take on a professional career or family responsibilities. There’s a natural, inevitable sequence to go through. And we’ve all signed up for it.

But why? What’s it all about?

Well, at the level of spirit or essence, all is one, all is love, all is joy. This is all very nice, but consciousness longs to experience more and more of what there is to experience, the utter richness and fullness of life.

How does it do that?

By fragmenting into zillions of conscious entities, each of whom has its own experiences and perspective, and each of whom can make its own choices about what to experience. Any soul can choose to continue being submerged in all-that-is, albeit with little sense of self. Alternatively, any soul can choose to undergo the experience of life in a separate physical form, interacting with other souls in their own physical forms. This is the ultimate way to experience oneself as a self.

And that’s why we are here?

We have all made this choice: to use the human form as a vehicle to help us become more conscious of ourselves as the amazing beings we are. The aim is to experience every possible experience that enables us to emerge more and more consciously and fearlessly as ourselves. We begin as helpless infants for whom the experience of separate existence is quite terrifying. But we end as autonomous, self-realised beings for whom human existence is the most amazing way of being, feeling joyful and free and sharing love with the whole of life.

See also:


566 Responses to “Reincarnation: the 35 steps of soul evolution”

  1. 1 Shannon 21 Aug 2014 at 3:07 am

    I have been struggling with my belief in God, reincarnation, and all things spiritual. It seems that you and the people on this site have much spiritual knowledge that I don’t have. I just have a few questions to ask;

    1. How do I know that God and reincarnation is real? Is there any indisputable reasons for me to believe? Its pretty hard with atheists loud and rampant in everyday life.

    2. How do you know that the Michael teachings are legitimate? What makes these teachings special so that I should believe them?

    3. After being depressed for a while and hating my life I decided to write out my ideal life. It has a lot of details in it and specific events that I want to happen in my life. Would it be possible that I could live that life?
    I desperately want to undoubtedly believe in this but with so many people saying “That’s mumbo jumbo because [insert reason here].”

    Thank you for your time. I greatly appreciate it.

    • 2 Ken Kaplan 21 Aug 2014 at 12:26 pm


      There is no indisputable proof of God through the intellect. The reason is God is a frequency of higher order consciousness within you. “God” is a word. Words are *symbols*. They stand for or point toward something but are not the thing itself. the number 2 is not two itself. It represents something in the world, two concrete objects.

      The great divide between religion and spirituality is that religion relies on *belief*, and that belief is in the authority outside of oneself. (Pope, Bible, teachings, tradition Holy Scripture, etc) Spirituality relies on one’s *experience* and authority comes from one’s own self, not an outside source. One verifies truth through experience, connection, with it.

      Atheism primarily is all about the material intellect. There is no scientific ” proof” of God. It can’t be found in the laboratory. That is because the frequency or vibration of the “God” energy is beyond the capacity of their instruments to measure it. There are many analogies but the easiest is that one group of people have an AM radio. This site and the world it represents is on FM. You try and tell someone who only has AM about FM and they loudly proclaim FM doesn’t exist. But you say “I hear it all the time and it is clearer, more expansive and greater than AM.” But because they can’t “tune in”, because they are using a limited intellect, they proclaim there is no FM. Meanwhile you hear it all the time when you turn your FM radio on.

      So most of us here who teach this stuff or explain it answer two of your questions. One, we have had years of contact, connection, communion with what one would call “God” in diverse and plentiful ways. So the idea that God is not real is absurd. This communion is self validating trough extensive experience. One builds up a powerful cross intersecting understanding in the same way a house gets built. It is not dependent upon or even related to the belief systems of others.

      What I find interesting is most of my “new age: friends” have all arrived at their path through unique, individual sets of experience, yet the common understanding of the landscape is the same. There is no Pope or Priest or scripture to tell them “what’s what” but there is an agreement as to how things work.

      The experience of God and the validity of the Michael teachings are scientific in that they are open to observation and internal validation. These take time to build one’s own inner sense of “reality”, although one powerful mystical experience can change your life. The primary tool for this is the INTUITION, which material science does not understand.

      Don’t you find it interesting that there are thousands of recorded mystical experiences, Near Death Experiences, hynotherapeautic experiences, incredibly accurate psychic medium experiences but because they can’t be subjected to a ‘scientific test”. but are anecdotal, science shuts the door and says ‘don’t look there”. It doesn’t fit our conception of things and we can’t measure it. Therefore its not real.

      In the end you must find “God” for yourself. I usually suggest the simplest way is to begin asking “God” (aka your higher self and your guides) to begin to show you the reality of this frequency. If intent is authentic, it will open a door where you give “God” (guides, higher self) room to move. There is no “God” out there. Its a universal energy and consciousness of self and YOU have the power to connect to it. This is one of the great secrets of human life.

      As to questions 2 and three, I have been involved with channeling for over 20 years. Just as if I was married to someone and got to know them intimately, the “God” energy I find expressed in the process (over and over and over) becomes extremely validating. There are frequencies and harmonics of peace, love, wisdom, and more that not only are apparent but at times are *enveloping*. One knows when something is “real” and not just imagination. Grace becomes self evident.

      I have been studying with and living this stuff for over 45 years. At this point its like my breath. This site is valuable to me because its another room in a very large house. It builds upon through its wisdom and harmonic, which I can feel, other things I have read about AND experienced personally. You might search through the archives of my posts where I have listed many of these.

      Years ago if you told people they were surrounded by these things called “radio and TV waves”, that they were everywhere, they would have killed you,. Now we have developed instruments that can use them. The atheists don’t understand that there are no instruments from their realm to measure what they claim does not exist. Furthermore they expect “God: to fit their conceptions of how things should be. The Cosmos does not conform to the limited demands of the human intellect.

      I suggest reading “Journey of Souls” by Michael Newton. It is a classic, very inexpensive on Amazon ( might be in your library) and will open your eyes. It dovetails with these teachings perfectly. Newton never heard of the Michael teachings. It sheds great light on reincarnation through a great deal of experiences of his subjects.

      As to number 3, yes.
      Take care.

      • 3 Ken Kaplan 21 Aug 2014 at 8:01 pm

        A few more points. I have been involved with an atheist online magazine (also political) and I find the discourse from Atheists rather primitive and irrational. The main object is to disparage the “God in the Sky’. This is to take the most base expression of “God” and the nature of reality and make it as if everyone thinks this way. In debate this is called a “straw man” argument. You project someone you disagree with having a position that is not theirs, then you argue against it.

        What they don’t realize is by arguing from the most primitive spiritual premise, they are by default accepting it as a credible basis for discussion. This is ridiculous.

        Second, although they talk about science a lot, they don’t understand it. Quantum Mechanics tells us this Universe is an illusion. There is no “there” there. Einstein discovered energy and matter were the same (E=MC squared). Thus the entire physical Universe is really a vast energy field composed to appear as if it were solid. Or as the great comedian Bill Hicks said

        “Today, a young man on acid realized that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration—that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. There is no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we’re the imagination of ourselves. Here’s Tom with the weather.”

        The amount of “solid matter” in this place is infinitesimal compared to the whole. There really are no “bodies”, “buildings”, “rivers”, mountains, etc, etc. as we perceive them. The ancients understood this (which atheists never address) and called this “Maya”, the one indivisible self cloaking itself as many.

        Furthermore, atheists don’t follow science because they do something no scientist would ever do. They use a sample size of one. The scientific method would never allow this. There a trillion times a trillion planets in this Universe. Ya think we might have a greater sample size of life and other civilizations before expounding on God and its nature? Do you think the infinite intelligence which created all this is meant to follow human linear thinking?

        The value of the Michael teachings is it allows us to see the back story of what’s happening in a very precise way/. Its credibility lies in the observable truth of its teachings. Fundamentalists fit “baby souls” to a “T”

        I find from a soul point three reasons why souls are atheists. (could be more) “Baby Soul” atheists have had real bad experiences with religion and are reacting. But they are just as zealous and dogmatic and “black and white” as their Evangelical brethren. “Young Soul” atheists, as written on this site, want freedom and desire to get away from the rigid structure of “baby souldom”. Mature atheists (Carl Sagan) need room to explore without a religious overlay. Julia Sweeney (“Pat” on SNL) did a one woman show, “Letting Go of God” in which she gradually embraced atheism. It was clear to me that her life contract was to rid herself of religious overlays from past lives so she could arrive at an unfettered existential ability to be present with life that she had not achieved before. This she did and it is how the Soul balances things out. In another life she will return to a more mature understanding of “God”. She is a mature soul.

        I have no issue with someone wanting to be an atheist. It is a Soul path. It has usefulness. Many aren’t ready and if you haven’t “experienced”, then “God” can’t be real for you.

        Hope this helps.

        • 4 Ken Kaplan 21 Aug 2014 at 8:06 pm

          Kabir was one of the highest guys to ever walk the planet. Nothing to do with a “Man in the Sky”.

          I. 85. Sadho, Brahm alakh lakhaya

          “When He Himself reveals Himself, Brahma brings into manifestation
          That which can never be seen.

          As the seed is in the plant, as the shade is in the tree, as the void is in the sky, as infinite forms are in the void–

          So from beyond the Infinite, the Infinite comes; and from the Infinite the finite extends.

          The creature is in Brahma, and Brahma is in the creature: they are ever distinct, yet ever united.

          He Himself is the tree, the seed, and the germ.

          He Himself is the flower, the fruit, and the shade.

          He Himself is the sun, the light, and the lighted.

          He Himself is Brahma, creature, and Maya.

          He Himself is the manifold form, the infinite space;

          He is the breath, the word, and the meaning.

          He Himself is the limit and the limitless: and beyond both the limited and the limitless is He, the Pure Being.

          He is the Immanent Mind in Brahma and in the creature.

          The Supreme Soul is seen within the soul,

          The Point is seen within the Supreme Soul,

          And within the Point, the reflection is seen again.

          Kabir is blest because he has this supreme vision!”

          P.s. Read also “Your Soul’s Plan” by Robert Schwartz. It fits with this site beautifully and Journey of Souls. You now have 3-6 months of homework to answer your questions.

        • 5 Joe 22 Aug 2014 at 2:20 am

          Hello Ken,

          You reply is quite simple and excellent. I also used to think on the same lines about Atheism. But thinking deep, I came to an understanding that all happens on a meticulously planned and executed framework. So nothing can be said to be off the plan. There are souls incarnated of different maturity levels who are born into diverse set of experiences. So all these are varied experiences.

          Its just like a high-schooler may feel, the curriculum followed in grade two as stupid, funny and lacking solid theoretical foundation. But that curriculum is devised for the second grade based on the recipient’s intellectual and mental maturity. Its improper to be labelled as stupid by a highly evolved person.
          This universe is complete. everything is contained within. We can get data on any mundane belief. If one believe that sept 11 was executed by US govt, he can find many conspiracy theories. So mind decided what one should look for and believe.

          Here comes the holographic universe principle. The picture shown in a hologram is based on the frequency with which its is seen. So one’s basic vibrational frequency state decides the time and space he” believe” to occupy among with his mental faculty. So nothing is bad even death. All is well.


  2. 6 Sunaina 20 Aug 2014 at 11:22 am


    How do Spirits see people on earth? Is it light(energy) or vibrations?

    Thank you.

    • 7 Ken Kaplan 20 Aug 2014 at 12:16 pm

      This is hard to answer. Perhaps other intuitives know more. If you watch a show like “Long Island Medium”, they appear to see, sense, and know. Beyond the human form, capabilities may be much greater. You might read the opening chapters of “Destiny of Souls” by Michael Newton who describes how Souls sense and communicate soon after departure.

      Perhaps a more important question is not how they see or sense, but how do you or are you seeing, sensing or communicating with them?

      • 8 barry 20 Aug 2014 at 12:30 pm

        Yep, my impression is that to see a physical object you first need physical eyes, so non-physical beings probably don’t see us as solid bodies the way we do. They see us on our soul level, just as they see themselves, as blobs of bright, multicoloured light.

        Our perception is pretty limited, e.g. we can only see the visible light spectrum (tautology, I know). Perhaps they “see” a whole different energy spectrum.

        I believe, though, that they can also tune in to our subjective experiences and so see what we see, etc. By getting inside us, as it were, they can even watch TV! I recall Esther Hicks, one fine day, wondering why she was enjoying the sights and smells of being outdoors so much, in a way that was so ecstatic it didn’t feel like she was herself — then she realised that it was Abraham who was enjoying “themselves”, smelling the fresh air etc, through her senses.


  3. 9 Mary Shaw 13 Aug 2014 at 11:41 pm

    How exactly do I figure out which level soul I am? Just from reading the descriptions and guessing, I think I’m a level 1 young soul, but obviously I don’t know for sure. Is there anyway that I can find out for sure?

    • 10 barry 18 Aug 2014 at 10:11 am

      Hi there

      This is a common question.

      Option 1 is to get a reading from a reliable Michael channel. If you look at the bottom of my page on the Michael teachings I’ve listed a few who I’ve had good readings from, or who seem to be generally reliable. (Channelling is never 100% accurate – even with what is clearly a good reading, still bear in mind that one or two elements of it could be “off”.)

      Option 2 is to know yourself so well that it becomes clear to you. But here I should point out once more that this isn’t so easy if you’re still in your youth or early adulthood (before approx 35).

      Why? Because while our soul may be at 1st level Young or 7th level Old or whatever, in each lifetime it takes 3 or 4 decades for our new human self or personality to “catch up” with our true soul age. The moment we incarnate into a new body, our self-awareness within that body is back at square 1, equivalent to an Infant soul. But over the years, we gradually climb our way up the spiral ladder of awareness until, around 35-40, we find our natural level – in other words, we manifest our full soul age.

      I’m a 5th-level Mature soul, but at the age of 20 I would have assumed that I was a Young soul based on my ego and ambition. That was as far as I’d got to know myself by that age based on observing myself in action (I had overlooked the more subtle signs of my inner maturity, such as a high degree of empathy).

      I suspect that an Old soul around the age of 20 will be acting pretty much like a typical Mature soul. On the other hand, a Young soul by the age of 20 will still be acting more like a Baby soul. (One day soon I’m going to do an illustrated article to explain all this!)

      So the fact that at 17 you perceive yourself as 1st level Young, I would take that as a clue that you are probably a Mature soul. But don’t take my word for it. Just keep observing yourself and in particular see if you can get a sense of the inner depths of your true self.

      … Or do it the easy way and get a channelled reading!

      Hope that helps,


    • 11 Ken Kaplan 18 Aug 2014 at 11:05 am

      Mary, I would recommend reading “Ask and It is Given” by Abraham-Hicks (*Esther Hicks). It explains the Law of Attraction which is a governing principle of this Universe.

      From my understanding, according to this principle, you can’t be a level I Young Soul. You would never get within a galaxy of this type of learning. “Viibrationally”, a level one Young Soul would have no interest whatsoever in these ideas and would never “gravitate” to them.

      You are most likely a mature Soul, most likely mid range or higher. If you are 17, you could be above Barry and I.

  4. 12 Truth 26 Jul 2014 at 8:29 am

    Is it possible to make contact with Crappy situation please as I resonated with her very much and would love to correspond with her

    As I am reading the replies…….I am feeling that this site is truly helpful in a much needed topic and the understanding and expansion it brings is tremendous and I can feel it is helping the overall ascension process of this entire planet………through each of us that is finding another piece of the jigsaw puzzle as we read!

    One of the hardest things to bear in this human life, I personally feel, is the feeling of not belonging……….and not finding anyone to help you understand why……….one of your replies stated that sharing what you have learned will help you and I totally agree………and that is why I have and will only ever help someone with something that I have experienced myself in the flesh so to speak……….theories are still theories unless experienced (but discussion of theories especially spiritual has always attracted me like a magnet!).

    My own personal eureka moment was to realize (remember)……….effectively………that we are SIMPLY IN A PROCESS OF REMEMBERING WHO WE ALREADY ARE, but our Higher Soul has chosen this particular aspect of itself(you/I) to do this on this beautiful physical planet earth, within this physical form/body/vehicle…….which I believe can be one of the most uniquely blissful experiences you can have……..to remember all that you truly are and your absolute connection to Source within the energy of love…….and then if you manage…..even for a short time, even for fleeting moments which can also happen (but can still be as powerful)……..to integrate this remembrance within your physical human being self………….for me it was transcendent and very empowering ……..but getting your memory back,can and most probably, will require a very profound, dark period, (but if you ask for guidance /help from above)……..you eventually emerge from this dark episode stronger and more importantly, one step or maybe two, higher than where you were. The “feeling” of liberation and actual liberation of this (which may not be immediate and still may need a lot of ongoing work to integrate into your psyche)… can be profound………Stick with it and always always, try to stay true to what you feel in your heart and your inner feelings as they are the truth….. your truth. You simply CANNOT go wrong if you honor truth.

    This site feels, to me, like it has amazing truth and wisdom behind it and I commend and thank the author for sharing and helping us……..and this is EXACTLY what we are here, at this time in our human evolution, to try and achieve………..UNITY! Simply put…….. we are ACTUAL…facets/aspects of our CREATOR…….. the energy of which is a perfect and complimentary balance of MALE and FEMALE energy. THAT is who, in fact, WE ARE!!! WE ARE AWESOME……please remind yourselves every day if possible……!

    Thank you!

  5. 13 Donald Vilified Sneed 25 Jul 2014 at 8:23 am

    I’m completely intrigued by how at the 6th level we begin to burn off karma insued at the earlier stages. Is this a conscious effort or a bonus we insue? Through my travels I’ve found that burning has a reaction which insues more karma. So are we less sensitive to the new karma or purposely less aware? I guess my point being at this stage are we pro or digressing? I took your statement to be a positive affirmation about the progression up the stages. To have a spot or timeline to tally up karmas workings seems wonderful, yet I find it to be missleading. An to be frank confusing and distracting. We cannot burn off karma we can apologize and forgive. As everyone should know insues more…Karma burns off, rather, out. We have no place or way to control how when or where this happens. So to categorize in level 6 gave me a false sense of elation that now has me raising an eyebrow to you sir. Why was karma even mentioned what was/ is Micheals premise here/ there?

    • 14 barry 08 Aug 2014 at 6:17 am

      Not really sure what you’re trying to say here Donald. Why shouldn’t karma be mentioned in the context of a long-running discussion about reincarnation?

      The Michael teachings are very explicit about karma. It’s like a “ribbon” that keeps a pair of souls tied together in a state of imbalance until the karma between them is resolved. Karma between souls is caused when, while they are both incarnate, one person chooses to deny the freedom of choice of the other in some way. (It can only happen on the physical plane.)

      Typical examples are murder (I decide when you die), rape (I’m forcing you to experience something you would never choose), deliberate neglect (I’ll teach my screaming baby a lesson by not feeding it for a week), imprisonment (I lock you up against your will), and what is charmingly referred to as mind-fuck (I tell you something totally untrue but once you believe you will have no choice but to do as I say.”

      In addition to these ‘freedom-crushing’ karmic acts, there are also Philanthropic Karmic acts, where one person decides to improve another person’s freedom of choice, with no expectation of a reward.

      Generally, we create ‘bad’ karmas with our fellow souls during the early stages of reincarnation. So infant, baby and young souls are where the real action is, in terms of bad karma. Mature souls fear to create karma at all, though in the early level of the cycle they could still do so. The karmas incurred by Mature souls tend to be non-violent and are more directed at the self (Self-Karmas) as opposed to “proper” karma with another soul. An example of a self-karma would be, say, addiction to alcohol – the same life problem is repeated in one life after another until the soul finally finds its own way out out. Old souls are more likely to develop Philanthropic Karma.

      Within each cycle, eg the Young soul cycle, karma is usually incurred early on (levels 1-3) while the soul is still clumsily trying to get to grips with its new level of awareness. By mid-cycle (level 4) the soul has pretty much grasped it, and late-cycle (5-7) is more about putting this new awareness to good use. Level 6 is spefically to do with harmonising self with others, and part of this is focusing on the burning of karmic ribbons. That way, one is karmically free and well balanced to enjoy the grand heights of level 7.

      Hope that makes sense


  6. 15 Nicko 11 Jul 2014 at 8:47 pm

    Interesting stories and perspectives in here.
    I’ve enjoyed reading about this, it has verified many things about life which Ive spent a lot of energy suspecting and digging at.
    Funny to say, 7 months ago, conciously I were a near militant atheist firmly believing that after one cease to live, one also cease to exist. It didn’t make sense to me, nor did I want to believe in an afterlife.. seeing all the misery, pain and suffering on this planet I would have a hard time resting in peace, ever.

    But experience changes you, and in the past 7 months I’ve had many.. in retrospect, another experience making time meaningless.. I’ve changed equally much in the past 7 months then I did in the previous 23 years of my life. Like a flood gate that was waiting to be open’d poured the river of expanded conciousness over me once the trigger mechanism were found.

    I do not know whether I’m an old, a young, mature or baby soul, I can relate aspects of my personality to all stages, but it doesn’t matter anyway. Young, old.. what matter’s is this very moment, the continous moment of our concious excistence. If I were to guess I’d say a late stage mature soul, as young, mature and old soul are those stages I can relate the most to as of this moment.. but neither give me any more joy then the other. Fact is, I’d be sad if this were among my last lives on earth.
    Like school, it’s dreadful while going through it.. but as your last year of school is coming to an end and you realize it’s time to say goodbye, it’s with sorrow. Like saying goodbye to a home you’ve grown up in. Saying goodbye to something that occupied so much of your energy over an endless amount of moments.
    This planet truely is an amazing teacher to those of us who recognise ourselves as her students.

    I’ve yet to fully connect with the world tho.. I was trying to find out whether or not a brew such as ayahuasca would be good or bad thing for me while spending many many months making the decission whether to go for it or not.. lately I’ve started realizing that there is no good or bad.. whether it turns out ‘bad’ for me, ultimately it would be a good learning experience for me. Although I must admit, a relatively sized part of me is still hoping for that it will be a ‘good’ thing :)

    I dunno about having to go through all stages as we incarnate into new bodies tho.. maybe it depends on the body as much as the soul but I’ve been acting a mature soul most of my life.. I can vividly recall moments when I’ve been as young as 5 years old asking the same kind of questions I’m asking myself today. Often I would feel like a grandpa around other children, or classmates as I grew older. I understood why they were doing good and bad things to eachother, and I would try not to interfer either way because intuitively I knew they were both equally good of an experience, ultimately it wouldn’t matter if I interfered.. I felt my job was to be on the sideline of the game of childhood, spectate it, study it closer from the distance.. and support the players that would approach me.

    I can hardly say that I got it right in this life tho, despite my deeper personality, I were to scared to show it to the public, still am to some degree, although I feel the mask is coming off little by little as I embrace spirituality more.. It’s an interesting experience indeed.. but as recognize the indications.. I could believe that I were approaching an older soul stage.. Boy how I would miss being young if this happens to be true.. I miss my childhood years of summer holidays going swimming with friends, having a waterfight and so on.. I miss being able to enjoy it as much as I did back then.. this is how I feel about the soul stages aswell..

    I suppose it doesn’t matter either way .. like I wrote earlier, the only thing that truely matters is the continous moment of our existence.
    Love your hardships cause they tell you how much you should value your good times, love your good times while they last before you must yet again attempt to climb another hill in your life :) Most empowering feeling in the world is to have gone through hell and find yourself asking for seconds. Much love <3

    • 16 Ken Kaplan 20 Aug 2014 at 3:37 pm

      Definitely mature or older. Too much wisdom, experience, perspective. The Soul’s needs often seem at odds with that of the personality incarnation. The Soul will decide on its needed moves.

  7. 17 Emerald Phoenix 30 Jun 2014 at 6:55 pm

    Hello my name is Emerald Phoenix. From childhood I knew that this was not my home. I had many challenges to overcome. Now I am 56. When asked I tell people that I am everything and I am nothing. I don’t know where this places me on the chart of spiritual evolution. Frankly it does not matter. All that I know is the connection to my higher power governs my existence. There are times when words come through me that are not of me. They are usually meant for someone else’s benefit. I rarely remember the exact words or why they were uttered. As a massage therapist and bodyworker , I feel like a vessel through which healing occurs. I don’t read books on the matter or go to seminars. Everything seems to occur on its own. From childhood, I have had what I call a counsel of Elders. I see them without my eyes. They sit in last supper fashion behind a wooden table. They are made up of Jesus, Buddah, Muhammad, etc. They have been my guides through my earthly journey. Again I have no words for what I experience. Neither do I need words. The act of speaking is often inadequate. Thank you. Emerald Phoenix

    • 18 barry 08 Jul 2014 at 12:21 pm

      And thank you, Emerald Phoenix. (As someone who’s still fixated on words, I’d say Old Priest at a guess)

    • 19 Truth 26 Jul 2014 at 9:28 am

      I resonated with your answer in that I have always felt Jesus standing next to me, almost as if when I am deciding how to react in a situation, I can feel him standing beside me telepathically going through the scenarios together but I can feel his answer as spoken words in my head ” you know what to do” and I always answer him out loud…. ”I know” and smile. It is true what you say about the words being inadequate…..I have always felt a connection to that of the Native American peoples, White Eagle I believe being one of my guides as well as Jesus……..White Eagle’s presence is always stronger when I am in Nature and I have always felt connected to the very soil itself and very rarely mention this as it is a very deep and I think old memory that I feel would not be adequately understood in it’s depth so I have kept it to myself and hence I find myself mostly on my own and not in groups and I have a deeply profound connection to whales and trees the emotion of which I can not adequately describe but the emotional love connection that stirs can move me to tears within seconds. I feel I have spent at least a lifetime with the whales and I was told once that i used to speak the language of Trees………there is SO much to discover about ourselves which in turn teaches exactly what we need to know about everything else in our Universe and beyond……..its so awesome that it makes me catch my breath sometimes!!!

      Blessings to you and may you continue your journey and discover all that you wish for in your life.

  8. 20 Brian Fraser 20 Jun 2014 at 7:37 am

    Hi, I cannot think of anything worse than reincarnation. I can only hope that God in his love will grant me one wish when the time comes. I won’t go into my life except to say it’s made me want nothing more than to be nothing, to cease existence completely, I wondered what your thoughts are on this?

    • 21 barry 20 Jun 2014 at 9:54 am

      Hi Brian

      Sounds like you hate the way your life has turned out thus far. I don’t know why but… Perhaps you were brought up with high expectations of life, maybe in a religious context, but you have found out the hard way that life can go “badly wrong” – whatever that now means to you in your own experience. Perhaps you are not sure who to blame – did your upbringing lead you up the garden path? Did God fail you just when you most needed help? Or have you simply made one bad choice after another, but are reluctant to accept responsibility for doing so because you didn’t see any of this coming, and so that feels unfair?

      When this life is over you will look back over it, examining each turning point, and come to understand exactly what you and others did, and why. You won’t blame yourself, or others, or even God; it will all be transparent to you — no matter how things ended up at each turn, behind it all there was always some kind of love and joy within you trying to find its way into life, but then just losing its way in the darkness of our human ignorance.

      On seeing all this, your greatest wish then will be to jump right back in and do it all again only differently, with a bit more hope, courage and wisdom.

      That said, you don’t have to wait for life to actually end before you can look back on it to gain such insight and self-compassion. What is your story so far? In what ways has it turned out differently from what you expected? Is there something you can learn from that?

      How about this: Draw an arrow representing your life so far, from A to B, from “birth” to “shitty mess” or whatever you think about your present life. Now extend the arrow as far as you like in one or more different directions. Each new direction represents a better way your life can develop from here on, provided you don’t simply resign yourself to some self-defeating thought like “this is how it is, and how it always will be”.

      The field is wide open.

    • 22 Ken Kaplan 20 Jun 2014 at 11:24 am


      Its hard to comment without knowing what has created this level of despondency in your life. I would suggest reading through many of the previous posts as some of them cover this feeling many people have and will give you a sense of the philosophy and experience of these teachings.

      I had a horrific early emotional childhood and college experience that left me with a severe case of PTSD that led to a terrible nervous breakdown that lasted in the acute phase for about 8 years and took 20 years to restabiliize about 75% after that. Fortunately I had spiritual supports given before that that installed in me motivation to get better. But for years I was bitter and angry at God for what I perceived as being abandoned. As I healed, I came to see this was not the case.

      Now looking back I can see the purpose and necessity for all of the trauma I had to endure. The development of compassion and empathy for others was high on the list.

      If you read my posts, you will see I have come to experience (not believe) that we are in charge of our circumstances, not only as Barry says, from here forward, but we were the ones (with God if you like) that created them in the first place.

      Here as humans, we often think if we did that we were nuts. We cannot see into the depths of what would be called soul and our “soul back story” as to why what has happened was necessary and important for our learning.

      It doesn’t feel that way, but the love of God you wish is actually expressing itself completely in the very life you have in this moment and is not separate from it. There is a deep purpose and reason for everything and these are not just platitudes for we live in a time when intuitiives (Psychics) are available who can pretty much tell us exactly why we are experiencing what we are and what our life lessons are about.

      This has been a very challenging year for me but there also have been great blessings. So I can relate even now. But I know I have challenged myself to learn and grow and and I do not want to give up on what I consider to be the profound gift of a physical incarnation, however shitty it has been at times. I understand the struggle when deep rooted stuff is just hard to get rid of and it feels like joy is far away.

      There is great value in praying to the angel of Hope. (there really is such an angel)

      Take it from one who has been there. and still has important stuff to work with. I don’t want to leave this place without having given 100%. Life is precious, even when it doesn’t feel like it. I don’t want any regrets when I go for things left undone when I was given opportunity to achieve them. Self love and forgiveness are high on the list.,

      • 23 Truth 26 Jul 2014 at 8:42 am

        I admire your strength and courage and determination….you are an inspiration and you are right to hope as it is what propels us forward when we are about to sink……..wishing you blessings of love and abundance in all areas of your life.

  9. 24 Sunaina 23 May 2014 at 4:12 am

    Thank You very much. You have explained it beautifully, this helped me in understanding Karma also. God Bless.

  10. 25 Sunaina 22 May 2014 at 9:12 am

    Hi, How do we know the difference between God’s Will and Free Will? Thank You.

    • 26 barry 23 May 2014 at 1:35 am

      Great question – one that plagued me through many hours off surrender meditation! Here’s what I’ve come away with:

      Your free will is God’s will. In other words, the divine plan is for you to be free to exercise choice as as you wish.

      From our human perspective, how we exercise our human free will is never “perfect” in the way that we imagine God’s will would be. We exercise free will from with the framework of our own personal egos, agendas, illusions, fears, etc. But even so, none of that is a violation of the overriding divine will, which is for us to find our divinity through our humanity.

      Some imagine that doing this or doing that, especially something negative or destructive like murder, goes against God’s will. It certainly goes against the will of the other person, and that causes karma, but in the grand scheme of things karma is inevitable – all part of God’s will if you like. That is, we will find our complete love for one another (and self) precisely through these karmic pitfalls.

      That’s not to say you are doing God’s will by going around killing who you please, on the grounds that anything you choose to do is an expression of divine will. (There was a Christian sect around 1000 AD who believed just that – “we can be immoral as we like because God allows it.” It doesn’t quite work like that…)

      Choosing immoral acts would only make sense at a very low level of awareness. Most of us (mature souls at least) are more aware than that. We are all free to kill, yet generally choose not to kill because we understand that our motives are not as pure as they could be. We also understand that others have an equal right to exist no matter how much we resent them.

      Does that mean new have lost some of our free will? No, it means that our choices are freely based on a higher level of wisdom than we had as, say, infant souls.

      To answer your question more positively: God’s will is universally all-encompassing, yet it is played out in every choice and action at the human level, which we experience as free will. “Should I be a poet or a car mechanic? Which is God’s will?” God doesn’t really care whether you become a poet or a car mechanic – what God cares about is how freely you make the choice.

      In fact, the more evolved we become, the more we experience freedom of choice and – paradoxically – the closer our ‘personal choice’ comes to resemble ‘divine will’.



      • 27 Ken Kaplan 23 May 2014 at 4:56 am

        Here I have to either disagree or refine Barry’s answer according to my understanding. First I think we have to redefine your question. It is not “God’s Will” vs “Free Will” but “God’s Will” vs “Ego Will”. They are different.

        Also we must redefine “God”. There is no separate “God”. You, we, all is God. Since you are God, having forgotten that you are God, you can never, as Barry points out _ultimately_ be in conflict with YOUR will at the highest level. I say ultimately. For from the highest place all roads must lead to Rome and it is the variation on experience that makes the journey.

        Better terms are ego self and higher self. Although Barry says we can choose whatever we want, a poet or a car mechanic, this is true but in a sense not most probable.

        In the state before we incarnate, we -as “God”-, choose a plan or intention for our lives. These are probabilities and encompass the “fate” or “destiny”portion we give ourselves. These include things like parents, country, area, culture, body, inclinations, intelligence and major life events (diseases, life changing accidents, major relationships and friends, etc). Although these are all probabilities, most are like tree trunks, very hard to move.

        Thus this destiny-fate portion of life WE have given ourselves (when united with our “God self) is “God’s Will”. Once on the ground, how we react, deal with, and make choices is “free will”. There are certain crucial choice points, timing issues, and ways in which we handle both challenges and blessings. Some lives are pretty well scripted “I want a great life this time, a 50 year marriage, and little problems” to “I want to set up an extremely abusive childhood and have severe emotional issues so I can confront them, grow, mature more and reach greater potential”. Most of us have some built in growth challenges.

        Example. I am a dream specialist. Years go the Angels told me they were holding me back on dream work because I had other gifts they wished to bring forth. (My God Will). I did not understand this until I felt a wave pulling me to be a spiritual coach which I had never imagined with much more enhanced intuitive ability, which I also had not envisaged (Years ago a woman told me I was a “reader which I did not believe. Now I do readings for people.) But I went with it. I still have struggled with it and I have a “choice” about fighting it or surrendering to it. Slowly, because I believe I am ready, I have been yielding to the larger flow. It is harder because the dream work comes easier and I have to confront greater fears in stepping into my intuitive gifts. But this is part of a larger pattern of accepting my true power and feelings of worth. So the conflict and coping is the “Free Will” part, what has been inlaid and encouraged is the “God Will” part. Its not easy.

        So how we cope, deal, expand or not is our “free will”. “God’s Will” is usually the most beneficial highest good outcome we can have and the issue is how much do we align with that with our “free will”.

        But not always. “God” is much vaster than our limited human notions of good and evil. Thus at certain less developed stages of soul growth it might be “God’s Will” for us to be a serial killer for that stage may be necessary to lay the seeds for a long arc of lives concerning power, its abuses, getting past a very immature phase of lust of killing, and the nature of abuse, bringing one ultimately to a much higher appreciation of “morality” and empathy. So here “God’s Will” and “Free Will” and “Ego Will” are pretty much the same as the soul is not ready yet to exercise higher choice and needs to immerse itself in the experience.

        So I would say technically, yes, one could be a mechanic or poet but that choice is either unlikely or part of a Soul plan to come to greater inner authority. Thus many souls confront issues of parental desires vs their own inner longings. The set up or agreements that CREATE the conflict as well as the true gifts given are our our own “God Will”, and how we choose to deal with it is our “Free Will.” We can end up denying self for a lifetime. But then we will come back to confront the same issues again.

        Most of the mistakes on this, imo, come from forgetting that WE are God in the first place. Nobody outside of us is pulling any strings.

        This is very hard for most to get.

        Hope this helps.

  11. 28 Ken Kaplan 21 May 2014 at 5:23 pm

    The reply used to take you to the post. Now its general. I don’t know if Helen posted publicly or privately sent you questions. I can’t find her post. I had to look all over for Joe’s which was near the top. Some of us can help if you wish, if people would ask on the forum.

    • 29 Helen 21 May 2014 at 11:01 pm

      Hi Ken
      I don’t know what happened to my post, so I thought I would re-write it again.
      I believe I am a mature soul, but unsure what level. I had a very difficult, traumatic childhood. I was ill, badly bullied, and brought up in a very fractious household. I was constantly put down which led to poor self esteem and confidence issues. I realise from this website both my parents were probably infant souls. Everything was rigid rules with no love. All I wanted was to feel loved but never got it.
      I could have easily gone down the wrong path, but instead achieved many goals. I was the first person in my family to go to college. I bought my own house. I have written a book. I have visited four continents and have a happy marriage with my soulmate. I also volunteer at the local hospital and help wildlife.
      The reason I write is because I cannot understand why my soul would chose such a nasty family. My two sisters are also argumentative, conflictive, materalistic people who treat others like dirt. I am just so grateful and thankful I am kind, spiritual and compassionate. It caused me a LOT of deep pain, which I have never really got over but have had to live with.
      Secondly, as a child, I was extremely fearful and timid to the point of being very withdrawn. I was frightened all the time. I have experienced panic attacks most of my life which are very frightening, athough I can control them. I am also scared of death, which I cannot understand as a mature soul. Is it to do with a bad childhood, or did I have a traumatic past life? I always felt I never belonged in the place and time where I grew up. I hope you can answer my questions, because it has nagged at me for a very long time.
      Thank you very much for your wisdom and compassion to help others.
      Love & light, Helen x

      • 30 Ken Kaplan 22 May 2014 at 3:00 am

        Helen, this is a big question, one I teach on so I’ll cover the basics. We create contracts and intentions before we come in with agreements with other souls to play roles we need. When here, we usually can’t see the “back story” of why things happen. We are now in a period when we can access this information.

        Many mature souls who are drawn to advanced spirituality take on difficult lives. They do this for several reasons. This is a very good time for “karmic clean up” so many of us asked for the “kitchen sink” treatment. I went though this as well and suffered a horrific nervous breakdown for a decade. But this clearing serves other purposes. It advances one’s spirituality. Michael Newton in Journey of Souls calls such lives “accelerated lives”. These lives are fraught with difficult circumstances. But these challenges usually deepen the soul in terms of empathy and compassion. It also gives the soul opportunity to use its spiritual nature and tools to strengthen and to make octave leaps toward inner Divinity. Think of all this as a “cosmic weight room”. From the earthly perspective it seems unthinkable, but from the realm of the soul, which knows its eternal nature, it is a golden opportunity.

        Nothing is by chance in this Cosmos. There are profound reasons why we make these choices. Usually we are offered variety of ways to deal with things. It surprises us to think we actually chose the hardest road, but we do.

        My suspicion is your life circumstances are clearing karma and allowing you to deal with very deep issues around personal power and abuse and forcing you into areas of strength you may not know you had.

        I suggest reading Robert Schwartz’s Your Soul’s Plan and Your Soul’s Gift in addition to Journey of Souls. They all are relatively inexpensive (used) on Amazon. Schwartz examines in detail people who chose exceptionally challenging lives and why.

        It helps to see the bigger picture and to realize you have been in control all the time from the higher place. One would think mature souls would have an easier time of it but ironically it is often the other way around. This is the true meaning of maturity, the willingness to forgo the easy path for the greatest learning and depth.

        Just finding this web site, by law of attraction, demonstrates your growth. Its a high vibration here for those who get it and to resonate with it means a strong measure of advancement.

        • 31 Helen 22 May 2014 at 12:57 pm

          Hi Ken
          Thank you very much for your swift response. I am beginning to understand why I had to endure much difficulties and hardship at a vulnerable age, which continued into early adulthood.
          I can begin to ‘see’ and understand ‘why’, and because of that, I hope one day I will be able to truly forgive and let go. At least my eyes are ‘open’ now, and i shall read the books you have recommended.
          I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you once again to both you and barry, and your remarkable work in helping others.
          I wish you both peace, joy and love.
          Helen x

    • 32 barry 23 May 2014 at 1:56 am

      Hi Ken, and thanks for picking up the slack – your wise words are perfect.

      Helen’s original is still in my “pending” queue. Out of habit (or principle, I cant remember), I don’t usually publish a question until I know I’m up to answering it. An unfortunate side-effect of that is that I sometimes spontaneously publish and answer the more “trivial” things rather than those which require reflection.

      When I get a question about a personal issue, I like to meditate on it to make sure I not just trotting out a standard intellectual answer from Psychology Today magazine or even just referring to channelled teachings. I try to feel my way into the heart and mind of the questioner, until I feel like I know where they are coming from, what’s blocking them, and what they can do to really help themselves. Sometimes the information I come out with doesn’t seem to of come from me at all, but whenever I’ve taken the risk to say “I don’t know why I’m saying this but have you thought about….”, this usually hits home for them in ways I didn’t expect.

      So, surrendering to the question and sensing the questioner are what I love to do. Sometimes I don’t get down to it, however, because the process takes time and focus and energy and my physical condition of late has been “not conducive” to that I kind of heartfelt response. I’ve explained my basic physical conditions on the About page, but I am increasingly aware of psychological/spiritual elements to it as well. An article full of insights is brewing!

      Chronic fatigue syndrome sucks for sure. But now I know it has something to do with claiming my power more fully. More to come……. :-)

      • 33 barry 24 May 2014 at 11:37 am

        Another belated “hi”, Helen

        I would just like to add to Ken’s words with some additional perspective from the Michael teachings (which inform much of what I write on the website). There are also some things I can relate to from my own experience.

        Your ability or tendency to reflect on your own life’s meaning (or apparent lack of) is indeed typical of those in the Mature soul age. I certainly include myself in that.

        I also suspect that you have come into this life with what is known here as the goal of Growth, which is what Michael Newton’s work (as Ken already mentioned) refers to as an “accelerated life”. The idea is to expand your consciousness as a soul by deliberately living a life of challenges, contrasts and conflicts. Think of the tension of opposites as a rocket booster. Typically, the early part of life (childhood) is set up to give you something to push away from, so that you are motivated to find your own way to something that has, for you, real value or meaning. For example, a loveless upbringing might propel you to learn what love really is and to share your insights.

        (Personal example:- I resented my childhood for decades until I stopped and reviewed my life so far. I was born in a bleak and relatively impoverished environment; my parents had zero expectations for my life beyond hoping I would get by as a coal miner. Home life was sometimes tense, but school was unpleasant and hostile. I retreated into a state of robotic semi-consciousness, just sleepwalking through my childhood. This finally changed later in my teens when I suddenly got that I could plan my own life, perhaps even escape (what seemed to be) my miserable fate. It caused friction with some people around me, but living my own life was more important to me than just fitting in with theirs. After school I moved the big city, went to university, found some exciting and prestigious work, visited different countries, took an interest in philosophy and then spirituality and mysticism, discovered who I was, met the love of my life, and so on….. On reflection, not only was it all worth it, but the early unpleasantness seemed to be exactly the right stimulus for my later choices.)

        Incidentally, you mention a home of “rigid rules with no love”. That sort of by-the-book harsh environment is more indicative of Baby souls than Infant souls. Infant souls don’t really “get” rules and laws. But Baby souls can’t live without them, and they tend to find free-thinking individualism disgusting and threatening.

        Your anxiety and panic attacks may be – though I’m speculating here – the result of living through a period of constant, random danger/threat/violence in a recent life. For example, someone who died young in the trenches of the First World War, traumatised out of his mind, shell-shocked, panic-stricken, might have a severe nervous tic and a fear of sudden noises in the present life. It might be worth reflecting quietly on whether anything like that holds any resonance for you, at least as an experiment.

        And as Ken says, actual early trauma such as bullying could be a case of karmic rebalancing. If we’ve agreed to deal with some karma in a certain life, we often try to get it over with quickly, i.e. In childhood. If it’s a death karma, then we are more likely to die young (why hang around?). If it’s abuse or neglect, again it’s usually convenient to get it over with early on. There are exceptions that require us to be adults when the experience happens. But a harsh experience at an early physical age will become embedded in our character makeup. For example, recovering from a stabbing at the age of 4 will leave its “mark” in more ways than one. We might grow up resentful, or fearful — or we might change and grow up with an awareness of, say, the dangers of using of violence to solve problems. With karmic experiences dropped on us in early life, we have more opportunity to move on and refocus on living a more purposeful and conscious life with whatever insight, compassion or wisdom we’ve gained as a result.

        Hope this helps

        • 34 Helen 24 May 2014 at 3:47 pm

          Hello Barry
          I hope you are feeling better today.
          When I read your comments, I thought “wow!” as your personal example so mirrored my own. It gave me much comfort to know others have had similar experiences. I have not come across anyone able to fully understand and explain so clearly my questions as Ken & yourself. Thank you for your wisdom and insight. I think you are both remarkable.
          One or two things you mentioned hit the nail on the head, so to speak. I cherish love and never take it for granted. I love my Husband without suffocating him and he loves me. It is the greatest gift for two people to have unconditional love for one another. I appreciate it a thousand fold and always shall. It has been the best experience in my whole life.
          Secondly, it is a funny thing you should mention WW1. i have seen two psychics who said I had been a soldier, but couldn’t elaborate further, so I have no idea when or where or anything.
          I am not a bag of nerves, but I hate loud sudden bangs. I react more than others and jump out of my skin. Without sounding neurotic, I also hate balloons at kids parties, and tense up when I know they are going to pop one. It makes me cringe!
          As a child , I had poor health, especially the lungs, suffering from asthma, chest infections and bronchitis. i use to gasp for breath. I don’t know if this is anyway connected or not. My lung capacity today is below average, although I am not afflicted anywhere as badly as when I was very young.
          The late Victorian/Edwardian age (1880 – 1914) leading up to WW1 is one of my favourite periods in time, also late Georgian (1800 – 1830).
          When i first started having panic attacks, I felt quite alone as I never knew anyone else who suffered them. Now, I have read about, seen on TV and meet in the flesh many people who have suffered them too, So I don’t feel like so isolated now.
          I have ordered the books Ken recommended and look forward to reading them.
          I hope your health improves and I wish you many blessings.
          Love & light, Helen x

  12. 35 Helen 20 May 2014 at 7:59 pm

    Hi Barry
    I sent you a few questions recently & I hope you can answer them for me. i have patiently been awaiting your response, but ebery day I look and find no reply. I would be ever so grateful if you could respond to them.
    Thank you.

    • 36 barry 21 May 2014 at 2:09 pm

      Hi Helen

      My apologies. I am aware of your questions and 50 or so others waiting in line. To put it simply, apart from the odd spurt of energetic activity I am almost constantly on the brink of exhaustion. I’m afraid I’m also struggling with the negative pole of Growth (overwhelm) brought on by a perfect storm of domestic stresses and traumas, but trying to get myself back together by “practicing what I preach” as it were – in this case relaxing and easing off, seeking the insights that make better sense of it all.

      All of which means my momentum in responding to comments/questions has had to take a back seat for the moment. I am dealing with each as I can when I can, often at random, but I hate the idea of letting anyone down or letting an important question going unanswered.

      (I did also waste considerable time and energy recently engaging with two people who just wanted an intellectual spat — never again!)

      I do appreciate your patience, and I will do my best to catch up. Perhaps this is just a reminder to myself that I am not immune to inner conflicts and questions of my own.


      • 37 Helen 21 May 2014 at 10:41 pm

        Hi Barry
        I am genuinely sorry to hear you have been unwell. I was unaware you have so many questions to answer. It goes to prove how popular and helpful your website is! I found it fascinating and it answered a lot of questions. I hope you get better soon.
        Kind Regards,

  13. 38 Brian Fraser 18 May 2014 at 4:46 pm

    I didn’t read all (not very fast reader) I would like to know what will happen when I die in this physical body, then refuse to reincarnate? also if God loves us so much, surely he would grant me my wish of ceasing to exist?

    • 39 barry 21 May 2014 at 1:51 pm

      I promise you Brian, it isn’t **your** wish to cease to exist. That’s just an emotion or attitude within your current human state. The essence of you is eternal and integral to the very fabric of reality, and loves it. The whole process of being and becoming is a joy, even if the conscious you at the sharp end doesn’t like it from time to time. Likewise the the idea that you might stubbornly “refuse” to reincarnate. There is no law to stop you, but I believe that once you step out of this goldfish bowl when you die and see the bigger picture it will all make sense, and you will be more than ready to jump right back in, eager to make an even better job of it.

    • 40 Ken Kaplan 21 May 2014 at 5:07 pm


      The great illusion here is that God and you are separate. It is the foundational issue of this Universe-separation. There is no possibility for “you” to cease to exist because who you truly are is existence itself. You ARE God having forgotten. Therefore there is a no “God” “out there” who loves you or not. The sense of “otherness” is a game or “tool” devised by infinite eternal existence in this time space reality to help itself in the “parts” of itself it has created to negotiate the terrain. At journey’s end we remember, “Oh, I am that, there is nothing else”. That’s why its called “awakening”

      Barry dealt with the Soul level pretty well. You forgot also you designed this life and its challenges.

      I suggest reading “Journey of Souls ” by Michael Newton and/or “Your Soul’s Plan” by Robert Schwartz.They should help clarify the interface between the seen and the unseen.

  14. 41 H 12 May 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Hi Barry
    Just to say I re read your article and i believe I am a mature soul, but unsure what level. It came to me after I submitted my questions.I realise now that I suffered in order to truly understand what suffering means to others and so I can help them. I am intending to volunteer to help the homeless. However, I wish my early life wasn’t quite so painful as it has deeply affected me.
    On another note, the fear of dying and panic attacks I think comes from a traumatic past life. I have an idea, but am unsure and I don’t want to be hypnotised to find out. Perhaps you can advise me.
    Thank you. H x

    • 42 barry 13 Jun 2014 at 7:32 pm

      Hi H

      Putting together what you have said, it seems likely you had a traumatic death in your most recent life before this one – so probably in the 20th Century. The association with a “life crisis” is intriguing – can you be more specific? For example, do you mean crises like losing a job/spouse/home, or more literally the life crisis of coming close to dying?

      The sense of not belonging to one’s family and childhood environment seems to be pretty common (given the number of people who write about it here). I think what happens is that we sometimes take birth in an environment where most people around happen to be younger souls. After all, currently on the planet there are more baby and young souls available as parents than there are mature and old souls. In these cases, we will almost certainly have the experience of being misunderstood and “unseen” for who we are. That doesn’t mean it’s a cosmic mistake, though. Having a birth family whose souls are relatively unfamiliar to you and not on the same wavelength is inevitably going to cause friction and, eventually, will stimulate the desire to express “who I really am”. This is probably what was planned all along.

      A nasty childhood experience is – however painful and undesirable – often a way to kick-start a lifetime’s search for true harmony, peace, meaning and purpose.

      That’s not to say that on seeing child abuse occurring we should look away and tell ourselves it’s that soul’s choice. If we are seeing it, then no doubt that is OUR soul’s plan – we are seeing it precisely so that we can choose what to do about it, e.g., whether or not to intervene out of compassion.

      But back to you – you might want to take a look at the goal of Growth, which is one of the archetypal paths we can choose to take in each life. A life of Growth will tend to involve a series of intense ups and downs, allowing you to learn about yourself and others more deeply through a process of “compare and contrast”. We learn to rise above the swings and roundabouts (or is that “slings and arrows”?) – by developing wisdom. The end result is an acceleration in the soul’s evolution.

      I would guess that you are indeed a mature soul. The precise level is always tricky for me to get at (not being psychic!). Generally, the early levels (1-3) are about separating from and rising above the previous stage (young), the mid level (4) is about internal integration, incorporating, consolidating. The later levels (5-7) are about putting it all to use in the world. It is also said that level 6 in any stage is where the karma from earlier levels in that stage is worked through – so there is another possibility you might want to consider.

      As an aside, Barack Obama (a Priest) has been channelled variously as mature levels 4-7. I would say his lack of assertive and expressive traits (something that doesn’t endear him to those who prefer a more outgoing president) would suggest he is more “mid” (4) than “late” mature (5-7). He may be the leader of the free world, which in itself is a pretty humungous life path, but mostly he seems to be putting stuff together inside himself rather than revealing himself to the world.

      With regards to hypnosis – can you describe your reluctance there? Do you fear losing or handing over control to another person? Have you read my own accounts of undergoing hypnotic regression? (If not, see Dark, satanic mills, At the cliff edge, and In search of harmony.)



      • 43 Ken Kaplan 13 Jun 2014 at 8:25 pm

        Good reply. Mostly what I would have said.Very interesting the 6th stage of mature and karmic burn off. I see many folks with that dynamic and it was certainly true for me. I can see that the extreme difficulties of early life and youth served to deepen Wisdom and Empathy and to force me to turn more deeply to God. I definitely am applying what I know to the world. I thought I was stage 5 but given this piece, I may actually be stage 6 mature.

        But however we decide or think of whatever stage we are, it does not change what is before us and our responsibility and accountability to process. “Wherever you go, there you are”.

      • 44 H 14 Jun 2014 at 2:09 pm

        Hi Barry
        I refer to a ‘life crisis’ as losing one’s job, financial difficulties or when a marriage hits choppy, uncertain waters. Even with the happiest of marriages, it isn’t always a bed of roses!
        The thought of hypnosis is unnerving on two levels. 1) I don’t like the idea of handing over my will to another – it would make me feel very vulnerable. 2) i have a feeling one of my recent lives was dying in wartime (I think so – I am unsure, just a hunch). If that is the case, i don’t want to experience it all over again. Once was enough! I want to know, but at arms length, so to speak. I am not a coward, but I don’t think I could handle feelings of intense fear. I would just like to be told instead. Do you understand? However, i do intend to read your articles. I sincerely hope that your health is better.
        Love & light
        H (Helen)

  15. 45 H 10 May 2014 at 9:31 pm

    Hi Barry
    I wonder if you can help me. I have been fascinated by reincarnation my whole life, ever since I can remember. I hope you can answer some questions for me.
    When I was an infant, i was very timid, frightened and scared of everything. I was afraid of just about anything. It took a long time for me to come out of it – not until high school. I was always anxious.
    I have suffered anxiety attacks on and off for since i was 18. They only begin when I encounter a life crisis. They are very debilitating and scary.I have managed to overcome them and control them now. What I don’t understand it that although I know i have lived before I am very frightened of dying.
    I had a very abusive family too. My parents and older sisters were horrible, nasty people and i always felt i never ‘belonged’ in that place or time. My whole childhood was traumtic and I suffered greatly. I was miserable the whole time. I also had poor health and was badly bullied throughout school. I was mocked at my appearance.
    However, I achieved many things and am proud of what I have accomplished. I could have easily have descended into bad things or ended up bitter but the reverse has happened. I was the first person in my family to get a degree. I bought my own house. I wrote a book. i have been on four continents, I have a friendship that has lasted over forty years and a happy marriage. I volunteer at the local hospital too.
    Please can you explain why I had to suffer so much at a vulnerable age.
    Did I have a traumatic death or is the anxiety due to a bad childhood? Why has my life had extreme highs and extreme lows?
    What level am I at? I am free spirit and very compassionate. Please can you enlight me. Thank you. H x

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